Wales: Plans for halal industrial park

Wales: Plans for halal industrial park

A venture capital firm is raising funds to launch Europe's first industrial park for Islamic goods, tapping an under-served market worth up to 4 billion pounds ($6.27 billion) a year in Britain, its chairman said.

The Super Halal Industrial Park (SHIP) will be based in South Wales and will take three to five years to launch, said Mahesh Jayanarayan, chairman of Halal Industries, who chose Wales for the project because of its meat industries and affordable land prices.

The cost of the project would be 150 million pounds -- a sum he plans to raise in the capital markets, by sourcing government grants and by finding anchor-partners like supermarket chains and multinational food manufacturers to "cement the deal," he said.

"If you look at some figures, the halal sector in the UK is worth between 2 to 4 billion pounds, the majority of that is imported," Jayanarayan said at the Reuters Islamic Banking and Finance Summit in London.

"You have 2.5 billion people on the planet eating halal food, directly or indirectly ... This halal market is not going away, it is not some fad," he said.


Europe has no Halal industrial parks, despite being home to millions of Muslims. SHIP will help to make the UK a landmark Halal center for the region, Jayanarayan said.

A successful first project could lead to further launches across Europe, possibly France and Germany and emerging Europe.

"We would prefer to go to places like Bosnia, where there's a large Muslim population and... we could seek EU grants."


The firm is also planning to set up an Islamic stock exchange in either London or Luxembourg to try to encourage the development of Islamic enterprise.

"We have a technical partner, a sharia board and we have identified a board of directors, but there is still a lot of work to be done (on the exchange)," said Jayanarayan.

The exchange would abide by Islamic law by restricting practices such as short-selling and the use of leverage.

Source: Reuters, h/t London Muslim

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